Max Verstappen will start the Brazilian Grand Prix from pole position after dominating performance in qualifying at Interlagos.
The Red Bull driver’s time of 1:07.508 was 0.123s faster than second-placed Sebastian Vettel, who couldn’t match the Dutchman’s pace in the middle sector of the lap.
Lewis Hamilton managed to split the Ferraris, leaving Charles Leclerc in fourth, but the Monegasque driver will drop backwards due to an engine penalty.
Valtteri Bottas and Alexander Albon lacked the pace of their teammates, but Pierre Gasly looked strong for Toro Rosso, taking the best of the rest honours ahead of Romain Grosjean.
There was disappointed in the McLaren garage early on as Carlos Sainz reported an engine problem on his outlap at the start of the session. The Spaniard managed to get his car back to the pitlane, but the mechanics were unable to fix the issue by the end of Q1, leaving the Spaniard at the back of the grid.
Daniil Kvyat ran wide over the kerbs as he pushed on his flying lap in Q1, leaving the Toro Rosso driver in the bottom five, while Lance Stroll also dropped out in the first part of qualifying.
Antonio Giovinazzi couldn’t follow teammate Kimi Raikkonen into Q3 as the Italian spun towards the end of the session.
The Finn managed to beat Kevin Magnussen in the top 10 shootout, with both Haas cars having progressed to the final part of qualifying.
Provisional qualifying result:
1 Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
2. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari)
3. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
4. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)*
5. Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
6. Alexander Albon (Red Bull)
7. Pierre Gasly (Toro Rosso)
8. Romain Grosjean (Haas)
9. Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo)
10. Kevin Magnussen (Haas)
11. Lando Norris (McLaren)
12. Daniel Ricciardo (Renault)
13. Antonio Giovinazzi (Alfa Romeo)
14. Nico Hulkenberg (Renault)
15. Sergio Perez (Racing Point)
16. Daniil Kvyat (Toro Rosso)
17. Lance Stroll (Racing Point)
18. George Russell (Williams)
19. Robert Kubica (Williams)
20. Carlos Sainz (McLaren)
*Charles Leclerc has a 10-place grid penalty for taking a new engine.